UK foreign Minister: Sirte could be new Dubai if dead bodies were cleared away

Sirte can become a holiday destination if it ‘clears the dead bodies’, says Johnson [The Guardian]
Boris Johnson has said Libyan city Sirte could be the new Dubai, adding, “all they have to do is clear the dead bodies away”.The foreign secretary’s comments at a Conservative conference fringe meeting have sparked anger, with the Lib Dems calling them “unbelievably crass”.

Former Labour leader Ed Miliband sarcastically tweeted “top marks to the UK’s top diplomat”.

Mr Johnson was making a point about the need for optimism in Libya.

He said there was a group of business people who wanted to turn the coastal city of Sirte, the former stronghold of so-called Islamic State and recently the scene of fierce fighting, into the next Dubai.

Lib Dem deputy leader Jo Swinson said: “Diplomacy is a basic requirement for the role of foreign secretary.

“This latest unbelievably crass and insensitive comment about an issue of such importance is further proof Boris is not up to the job.

“May needs to get her house in order and sack him.”

Former Swedish Prime Minister Carl Bildt said: “It might be that Boris Johnson is slightly simplistic in his approach to rebuilding countries after war. Slightly.”

 

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